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Program Philosophy


VCFC programs reflect the research-based understanding that play is essential to children’s health and well-being, and foundational to children’s learning. VCFC supports children in creating their own knowledge through hands-on experiences and child-initiated play. Teachers provide encouragement, nurture, protection, security, stimulation, and supervision to children.

The VCFC philosophy of Education is inspired by social-constructivist systems thinking theories, including the work of John Dewey, Jean Piaget, Lev Vygotsky, Howard Gardner, and Loris Malaguzzi. Conceptual understandings emerge through a child’s direct engagement with the world. Through primary relationships, shared language and concepts become the tools which children use to absorb social practices and construct their understanding of themselves and their community.


 The Acorn School Emergent Curriculum is featured in the Early Childhood Success video series produced by The Ayers Institute for Teacher Learning & Innovation at Lipscomb University.

 Click on: Child-Led Inquiry in a Pre-K Classroom